What Did You Come For? - Psalm 100:4
When we leave our homes, we often leave to do something or go somewhere. Usually when we go somewhere, we go with a purpose in mind. When we go to our place of employment, we go to perform a job. When we go to the grocery market, we go to buy some food to eat. We go to the barbershop to get a haircut and have some fellowship. We go the Hairdressers for a perm and some color. We visit JC Penney or Kohl’s to buy clothes to wear. We shop at Rooms to Go for furniture to sit and sleep on. So if we leave our homes and go to different places with a purpose in mind, what was your reason for leaving home and entering the House of God today? As you ponder in your mind why you came this morning, let me share with you the words to a popular song that asks the same question. The songwriter asks, “What did you come to this service for? Did you come to point a finger? If you didn’t come to praise His name, then you should walk right out the door.” I wish I had a witness. The verse continues by listing several reasons why praise is comely in the House of God. Then the verse finishes by saying, “I’ve come to lift Him up, I’ve come to praise Him, because I may not have this chance anymore.” Well, if you are here this morning and don’t quite understand why. If you stopped by Oberlin Baptist Church, today and many not be clear on what you should be doing while you are here. Let me help you today by looking at the worship model created by the king of worship, David. David loved the Lord and was a man after God’s own heart. One of the reasons he was a man after God’s own heart, was because David wasn’t afraid or ashamed to worship the Lord. One time David worshipped God so hard that he danced right out of his clothes. He worshipped so hard his wife got mad because she couldn’t understand why all that was necessary.
She didn’t know David was thanking God for the time God was with him as he defended his sheep from the lion and bear. She couldn’t comprehend that David was giving God glory for the way God gave him the victory in his battle over Goliath. She couldn’t wrap her mind around why David was embarrassing himself in front of the people, while David was just thanking God for protecting Him while he was running from Saul and for how God was blessing him and the army of Israel with victory after victory. All she could see was David dancing, shouting, and coming out of his clothes. However, she couldn’t taste and see that the Lord is good. She could see one thing with her eyes, but she couldn’t feel with her heart what those outward expressions of David really meant. You can see the glory; but often times you don’t know the story. You might see the shout but you don’t know the pain that is fueling the shout. You can see the praise but you don’t know what I’ve come through that makes me dance and holler. Michal understanding of David’s exhibit of worship matched her experience with God. Because she hadn’t experienced God by Him delivering her from something or through something, how would she have any fuel to help her praise God? I say that because if God has ever brought you out of a bad situation, your experience with God will cause you to thank Him. In addition, for those of us without much experience of God’s deliverance or for those of us who have forgotten where all our help comes from? David reminds us today by telling us why we come to church, how we could come to church and why praise if necessary. He starts by telling us we must “enter into His gates with thanksgiving.” So we have to start by coming to church, we can’t sit on the outside looking in. In addition, when we enter in, we should enter in thankful. Thankful, that He woke us up this morning.
Thankful, we are clothed in our right mind with a reasonable portion of health and strength. Thankful, we have a little mouthful to eat, clothes to wear and a roof over our head. We should be thankful for mercy, is anybody here thankful for God’s mercy? As long as we are receivers of mercy, we must be givers of thanks. As long as we can walk around and know the difference between up and down, right and wrong, we must be givers of thanks. As long as we can realize that if it had not been for the Lord who was on our side, where oh where would we be we must be givers of thanks. As long as He keeps on blessing us, making a way out of no way and keeping hurt, harm and danger from us, we must be givers of thanks. In addition, we should give thanks with a grateful heart and a shout of joy. David continues our lesson in worship by saying don’t stop with just giving thanksgiving; we have to “enter into His courts with praise.” Courts being a plural word meaning wherever we enter into a House of God, our admission or price to get in is our praise. Somebody is in God’s house this morning and has not paid their price of admission by praising God. If you enter into the movies without paying the price of admission, somebody will call the police because you are in the movies illegally. If we go to the theater or a concert without paying the price of admission, they would ask us to leave the concert. What would happen if God placed His ushers in His house and one of them came and asked you to leave because you had not paid the price of admission, which is praise? How do you pay the price of admission through praise? We pay the price of admission through price by our singing, showing gladness, through our giving, and thanksgiving. We need to praise His mercy because His mercy permits us to enter into His gates. We need to praise His grace because His grace permits us to enter into His gates.
We need to praise His faithfulness, His love, His forgiveness and His son Jesus because all of these things permit us to enter into His gates. We should be excited, elated, ecstatic, euphoric, overjoyed, thrilled, delighted, jubilant, happy, glad, and sitting in seventh heaven over the fact, we are able to enter into His house and be “thankful unto Him.” It’s important for us to be thankful unto Him and to show our thankfulness. We should be thankful for all He has done. Look back over your life and look where God has brought you. He helped us graduate from school not Magna Cum Laude but Thank you Laude. God did it and we need to be thankful unto Him. He put food in our kitchen when we had no money in our pocket. God did it and we need to be thankful unto Him. When that bill that was overdue mysteriously was paid, we need to recognize that God did it. And we must be thankful unto Him and while we are being thankful unto Him, we should bless His Holy Name. We should bless His name because he has blessed us. And because He has blessed us and made a way out of no way, we need to bless Him in return. We need to bless His name and bless His character. Whatever He does, we need to make sure we bless Him for it. We need to bless God when He gives and when He takes away. Because Job taught us, “The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away but blessed be the name of the Lord.” His name is Holy and is blessed. His name causes demons to tremble, His name causes the dead to rise from their graves, and His name will make ever knee bow down and every tongue confess. Can I get a witness? If you still need a reason to enter into His gates with thanksgiving and enter into courts with praise. If you still need a reason to be thankful unto Him and bless His Holy Name. Let me leave you with the fact that the “Lord is good, his mercy is everlasting and his truth endureth to all generations.” Is there anybody here that knows the Lord is good, if you do then that’s your reason to praise him? If you know His mercy endures forever, then that’s your reason to praise Him. If you know that God gave His truth to your Moma, gave His truth to you and gave His truth to your children and your children’s children. And that truth is real and has sustained you through good and bad times. That shows that His truth has endured throughout all generations. So If you were to ask me what did I come here for? I would tell you, that I’ve come to lift my hands. I’ve come, to shout for joy. I’ve come to lift Him up. I’ve come to bless His holy Name. For the Lord has been good. He’s been better to me, than I’ve been to myself. So I’m going to thank Him in the morning, I’m going thank Him in the Noonday; I’m going to thank Him when the Sun goes down. I’m gonna thank Him with everything I’ve got. Because He’s done so much for me that I cannot tell it all.